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Umbro eyes return to Manchester United – report

Manchester-based sportswear firm Umbro is in talks to return as the kit provider of reigning English Premier League champion Manchester United, according to The Independent newspaper.

Earlier this month, reports emerged that United was close to sealing a 10-year extension to its current partnership with US brand Nike worth in excess of £600m (€728m/$1bn).

Nike replaced Umbro as United’s kit manufacturer in 2002 and its present deal expires at the end of the 2014-15 season.

Umbro was owned by Nike for a five-year period before being brought by American company Iconix Brand Group 15 months ago. The Independent said United and Umbro have staged three meetings at both Iconix’s New York headquarters and the club’s commercial base in London.

Sportswear brands Adidas, Warrior and Puma have also been reported to hold an interest in the United contract over recent months, along with Japanese fashion retailer Uniqlo.

Umbro sealed its return to the Premier League last month with a five-year deal to supply Everton’s kit from next season.